By Max Davies

LANCEFIELD Football Netball Club is launching its 150th anniversary book this weekend and is inviting the community along to the celebrations.

The 248-page book, created through a collaboration between the club and the Romsey and Lancefield Districts Historical Society, documents the club’s history since 1873 through a range of newspaper extracts from the Romsey Examiner and Lancefield Mercury, photographs, and even footballers’ letters from the trenches of Gallipoli.

Well known authors John Marsden and Rod Gillett were brought onboard to assist in compiling the historical research, which was coordinated by co-contributors Denis Graham, Shirley Kishere and past club president John Chisholm.

Recorded are various premierships and victory celebrations, as well as the sometimes heated 150-year rivalry between the Tigers and neighbouring Romsey who they face again in round seven this weekend.

Mr Chisholm, who also played reserves for Lancefield, said the club had wanted to prepare a comprehensive collection of its history for some time.

“There’s a lot of history in the town with [club family] names still going through, so it just came up that we should do a book,” he said.

“We really extensively researched those early years and got a lot of information and historical facts and photos, and where we didn’t have photos we had some sketches put together going right up to the last year.”

To commemorate the book’s launch, the Tigers will don replicas of the jumpers worn in Lancefield’s first premiership year in 1888, which feature maroon and light blue – a far cry from the club’s current yellow and black uniform.

Lancefield’s netballers will also be wearing similar uniforms to those worn in the team’s first years during the 1960s, with the senior games for both sports to begin following a short ceremony acknowledging the histories of both the Lancefield and Romsey clubs.

“[The netballers] started off in the 60s, and apparently the very first team to do it were helped by the policeman’s wife at the time, who cut all the patterns out and each girl had to take them home and sew their own dress,” Mr Chisholm said.

“I don’t think our current lot of girls will be doing that, but they’ll be wearing something very similar to those original dresses.”

The launch will be hosted by The Age sports editor Chloe Saltau and will begin at 12.30pm on Saturday at the Lancefield clubrooms, with the book to be available for purchase for $80 following the official ceremony.

To purchase a copy of the book, people can visit bit.ly/3MzG3if.